Introduction to Narrative Therapy: A Social Justice Approach



Instructor: Stephen R. Gaddis, PhD

The online course will run from Monday, September 17- Friday, November 30, 2018.

There will be two scheduled, online meetings:
Monday, September 17, 2018 from 6:00 – 9:00 pm
Thursday, November 29, 2018 from 6:00 ‒ 9:00 pm

People use stories to interpret, or make meaning, of their lived experiences. This includes stories about “self,” relationships, and problems. A narrative perspective allows us to shift our thinking about problems. Instead of locating problems inside people, narrative practitioners focus on people’s relationships with the stories shaping their lives and relationships. The stories shaping people’s live are often one’s they have internalized as the right and best way to make meaning. Often, this is an effect of the success of culturally dominant stories, including stories about race, class, and gender, for example. Narrative practices help people deconstruct internalized taken for granted stories and re-author stories they find fit better with their values, intentions, hopes, and purposes. Narrative practitioners are informed by a Narrative Worldview, which is a radical alternative to the Normative Worldview that is culturally dominant in the West. Narrative approaches are growing rapidly around the world because of its orientation to helping that features considerations of respect, power, and accountability, and not individual pathology. Narrative approaches are grounded in post structural ideas that have been influenced by philosophy, feminist theory, multiculturalism, literary criticism, social theory, and anthropology.

Narrative-informed ideas have been put into practice in various helping contexts, from individual therapy to community action, and everything in-between including couple, family, and mediation work. A narrative perspective is now available for every conceivable problem, inside or outside the DSM.

This online course will cover an introduction to the following topics:
1. Narrative Worldview, including its philosophical assumptions and ethics;
2. De-Centered and Influential Stance of the Narrative Practitioner;
3. De-Constructing Conversation Skills, which helps people identify and separate themselves from problems;
4. Re-Authoring Conversation Skills, which help people identify and grow stories that support their values and preferred next steps in life.

Program Code: NT30
Credits: 30 CE Credits
Fees: $960

No previous requirements are necessary to participate. Anyone engaged in domains of helping are welcome.

About the Online Delivery Method

Completing this introductory online course is a critical first step toward becoming a skillful narrative practitioner. The course is designed to be taken entirely online. Students will interact with their instructor and classmates online for ten weeks. Students can login and participant in the ten weekly modules on their own schedule, provided they meet the weekly deadlines.

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